After months of searching, you’ve finally found a new job. You’ve found a manageable schedule, personalized job description, and acceptable compensation. All you have left to do is activate this opportunity. Before you put on a fashionable outfit and log on to your first day at a new job, there are a few important things you must do. Although there are some minor details you need to consider, there are a few major considerations you must take before your first day on the job. In this article, we will talk about six things you must do when you start a new job.
1. Determine Who You Can Ask Questions
With every new role, there are learning curves. In order to learn the best practices for success in your career, you need to know who you can ask questions to. Although your boss may have all the answers, it is sometimes intimidating to ask them all of the simple questions that you have. Identify a coworker or peer in the office that is familiar with your role.
2. Get a Realistic Timeline of Your Training Period
Before you launch in your role, you will likely go through a period of training. Make sure you have clear expectations for how long your training period will last. When you have the right time frame in mind, you can ensure that you are doing what you need outside of the office to obtain all the knowledge that you need prior to your start date.
Many companies require new employees to shadow other employees in the workplace for a period of time. Even if you think this is a waste of time, take the opportunity to ask questions and gain a more holistic understanding of the company as a whole
3. Understand the Compensation Structure
If you are working in a role that has bonus and commission tiers, make sure you understand the scheduling of your compensation. Do you get quarterly bonuses? Are your commission checks escrowed or immediately paid in full? What percentage of your sales are you rewarded with? It is important to know the rhythm in which you will be paid. In addition, many commission tiers are packed full of exceptions and nuances. If you have goals that you want to complete, make sure you know the exact steps it will take to get there.
4. Learn the Expectations
Before starting a job, it is important to know the expectations that go beyond the job description. Are you expected to participate in team building activities and events? Are you expected to work outside of normal work hours in certain situations? Unfortunately, there are many aspects of a job that go beyond what the description details. Talk to an individual who has held the same position in order to get a clear understanding of what the role entails. A few questions you may ask are:
- What were the unexpected challenges that you faced in this role?
- Was the workflow steady or seasonal?
- Would you recommend this position to a friend?
These questions will allow you to get a better understanding of the demands and expectations of the role on a daily basis.
Some jobs require long hours and extensive physical labor. If you are working in a role that is physically demanding, understand the worker compensation guidelines that are in place in case of an emergency. If there is a large chance that you will be injured on the job, have the workers compensation attorney on speed dial to help you navigate any potential situations. Almost 3 million people get hurt on the job every year. For this reason, it is important that you have a plan in place in the case of an emergency. You can read more about workers compensation here.
5. Identify Your First Deadline
Before starting a job, it is important to know what your first deadline will be. If you are beginning a job at the end of a quarter, you may have deadlines and goals immediately upon arriving. Make sure that you know when your first deadline is so that you can set a standard of excellence immediately.
If you have a task to complete in the first week or two of your arrival, you must hit the ground running. Make sure that you know the details of the assignment so that you can gain a positive reputation in your first impression. With more people being onboarded and trained remotely, employers have an expectation that new hires will jump into the culture and learn the ins and outs of the company on their own. The remote onboarding process requires individuals to take initiative.
6. Recognize the Growth Potential
Most people view their career path as a trail made with stepping stones. Each job you take is a stepping stone until you reach your maximum potential. Before starting a new job at a new company, take the time to see potential pathways forward. Before starting a role, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I see this job progressing into an even better role in the future?
- Can my goals and dreams be accomplished at this company?
- Will my experience here be relevant on my resume?
Make sure that you can see a path for growth in the desired direction. If not, you may want to look into alternative opportunities.
Starting a new job can be daunting. You must quickly understand the culture, expectations, and pace of the role that you are beginning. Although it is important to know the dress code and the office jokes, it is more important to know the expectations and goals that you have in a given role. Soaking up the culture of an organization takes time. In your first few weeks, you will not have a holistic understanding of the atmosphere that is present each day in the office. If you focus too much on “fitting in” and establishing workplace relationships, you may forget about the tasks that need to be completed. Focus on the assignments that you have control of and dedicate 100% of your energy into making this company a better place.